NewsHerceg Novi plans to welcome cruise ships from next summer

Herceg Novi plans to welcome cruise ships from next summer

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Herceg Novi is poised to welcome large cruise ships starting from the upcoming summer tourist season, with plans for these vessels to anchor near the local port in Zelenika. Passengers would then be ferried to the shore via smaller boats. While the option of docking these ships was considered, unresolved property rights issues complicated matters, prompting the coastal municipality to seek anchoring permission from the government.

According to officials from the municipality, led by Stevan Katić, the process has been ongoing since 2018, with continuous requests made to relevant authorities. They assert that the Zelenika port area and its waters meet the necessary criteria for this venture. Located in the eponymous settlement in Herceg Novi, the port already houses key government agencies such as the Customs Administration, police, and Harbor Master’s Office.

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Authorities affirm that these agencies are supportive of anchoring cruise ships near the port and have the requisite capacity to handle such operations within legal frameworks.

To minimize impact on land traffic and city infrastructure, maritime routes would be utilized for passenger disembarkation. Smaller boats or privately owned vessels would facilitate the transfer of passengers from the cruise ships to selected destinations in the Bay of Kotor. The depth of the designated area ranges from 30 to 38 meters, with an assessment indicating suitability for anchorage. As docking at existing piers is unnecessary, no additional infrastructure modifications are needed. The municipality anticipates readiness for the 2025 tourist season.

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A working group has been tasked with assessing compliance with regulatory conditions. The next step involves requesting government approval for anchorage allocation, which the municipality plans to utilize. A cross-sectoral working group comprising 11 members is evaluating the Zelenika port’s adherence to regulations and standards for ports categorized by maritime traffic type and purpose.

Previous considerations for the entire Zelenika port complex to receive approval for passenger ship reception were hampered by unresolved property issues and administrative complexities. Consequently, it was proposed to segregate the anchorage area from the port complex. This decision-making authority now rests with the government following regulatory amendments.

Recent discussions with Minister of Transport and Maritime Affairs Filip Radulović underscored significant interest from businesses and stakeholders in the Bay of Kotor for cruise ship docking arrangements. The municipality remains committed to facilitating this endeavor, recognizing its potential economic benefits for the region and local residents.

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